Monday, January 16, 2012

The Wall Bangers, or What Comes After

It is important to believe when you are young that, ultimately, the world is an open system. And so you decide "what you want to do when you grow up." Then you go ahead, in this vision, and do it. As you grow older you see that the system is more closed than open, and you spend the rest of your productive time trying to tear down the walls and beat open the doors to get where you want to go. Then at last, in old age, you are exhausted and you slump down against the wall, humming a little song to yourself, and wonder what it would have been like on the other side. At long last, you stop caring about the wall, the door, and what lies beyond. You forget little things that used to seem important at first, then more and more as time goes by. You start looking up to the sky, and think of soaring away from the whole thing.

Then... well, I honestly don't know WHAT is after, but those people go. And we who still beat against the door think about them and feel a little chill, an emptiness, as we remember them doing what they did in ordinary life. What IS the point of the way they made scrambled eggs, with a little flick of the wrist, now that they are gone from us? Or that they laughed when they watched the Johnny Carson show, their roared guffaws echoing upstairs as you lay in bed.

What? And we think about OUR eventual slumping down and the little song we'll hum.


We need to capture that song. And make it louder so we door beaters can hear it now. And learn from it.